The PETRONAS MIE Racing Honda Team is ready and waiting for the twelfth and final round of the 2023 Supersport World Championship, to be staged this weekend at the Circuito de Jerez – Ángel Nieto in Spain.
Despite having no recent experience of this particular Spanish circuit, rider Tarran Mackenzie is optimistic as to his chances, particularly if the weather were to play into his hands. In a season that has seen Mackenzie score a fantastic win in the Czech Republic, in a race that ran in mixed conditions, the British rider is prepared for anything. Unfortunately, team-mate Adam Norrodin is still not fit to compete and will therefore be replaced at this final round by brother Ibrahim, who already lined up with the team at Aragón and Portimão. The duo will be joined by wildcard Khairul Idham Pawi, a Malaysian rider who has extensive experience in the Moto3 and Moto2 world championships. The 23-yearold, who is currently leading this year’s ARRC Supersport championship, will be competing in the WorldSSP championship for the first time this weekend.
The Jerez de la Frontera circuit, known as the Circuito de Jerez – Ángel Nieto since 2018, is located in the Spanish region of Andalusia. The facility has hosted international race events for several decades, ever since its inauguration in 1985. The Superbikes first competed at Jerez in 1990 and were regular visitors between 2013 and 2021. The track returns to the calendar this season as a replacement for the cancelled Argentinian round. Measuring 4.423 km in length, the track incorporates thirteen corners, of which five left-handers and eight right.
“I really like the Jerez track, though I haven’t raced there since 2013. I did do some testing there maybe five years ago, so that’s my most recent experience. I know the track, which is an advantage, but we’ll also have to consider the weather, which can be a bit iffy, especially at this time of year, so we’ll have to wait and see. I want to score more points before the end of the year, so I’ll be going all out this weekend to finish the season on a positive note.”
“I never imagined I’d be competing in three consecutive rounds of the world championship, so I’d like to thank Midori and the team for the opportunity and for believing in me for another WSSP round. Coming into this round, I’d like to build on the momentum of the previous events at Aragón and Portimão where we improved with every session, from free practice to race 2. The team has definitely come a long way, going from strength to strength from round 1 up until today. It’s unfortunate my brother Adam isn’t here racing as he will undergo surgery back in Malaysia. But I want to do him proud by trying my best to fight and put on a good show for the fans and, especially, for the PETRONAS MIE Racing Honda Team.”
Khairul Idham Pawi
“I would like to thank Honda, PETRONAS and MIE Racing for giving me this opportunity to compete as a wildcard at Jerez this weekend. My long-term goal is to compete full-time in WorldSBK and so I cannot wait to get out on track and get a first taste of the WorldSSP championship. Let’s see what we can do.”
Name: Circuito de Jerez – Ángel Nieto
Length: 4.423 km
Pole position: right
Turns: 5 left, 8 right
SSP RECORDS: Best lap – Bautista (Ducati) 1’39.004 (2019). Superpole – Rea (Kawasaki) 1’38.247 (2017).
2021 SSP RACE RESULT: 1. Aegerter (Yamaha); 2. Oettl (Kawasaki); 3. Tuuli (MV Agusta)